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Old 19th October 2010, 08:39   #16
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I have been advised that my post does not fit in with the guidelines in some aspects. I dont know how to edit the post or to delete it. If you could delete the post, I will re-enter it. I apologize for this.

If it is possible for me to edit my post myself,I will do so but the FAQ informs me that a post can only be edited within a 20 minute window

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Old 19th October 2010, 12:47   #17
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Note from Team-BHP Support : Edited the references of alcohol. Please continue with your travelogue and do refrain from discussing alcohol on this forum.

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Old 19th October 2010, 16:05   #18
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Originally Posted by deepak_misra View Post
I can feel the cholesterol solidifying on my arteries and have started marking my blood group as UB+ wherever required to be stated.
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Originally Posted by deepak_misra View Post
Not wearing a watch confuses the system and time looses it meaning. A strange thing is that time seems to get compressed......Maybe this is what Einstein was talking about and managed to get the Nobel prize?
Day 2 is also very intersting to read..keep going. rated 5 star.
You should write a book someday, atleast a dedicated blog.

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Old 19th October 2010, 19:21   #19
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This is fantastic!

there is a bright-green house with a matching green jeep! Did you see that? I've even posted a picture of that in my t'log!
I had a look at the picture and it doesnt ring a bell. I feel like making a trip on the weekend to confirm if I have seen the jeep or not

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Old 19th October 2010, 19:53   #20
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I had a look at the picture and it doesnt ring a bell. I feel like making a trip on the weekend to confirm if I have seen the jeep or not

Deepak
Well.. it was about 300 meters from the Maria Hall junction, towards the beach. I'm surprised you missed it! You really, really can't miss such a bright thing! But then again, you can't be blamed. Most things in Goa are generally brighter and more colourful than in Bangalore!
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Old 20th October 2010, 10:29   #21
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Hey Deepak, Sernabatim Beach looks attractive. Is it shallow? Though I had been to Goa, my focus was more into north and the only beach I visited in south was Paloem but the most beautiful beach I ever saw.

And food, yes its a feast for Non veggies. We enjoyed King fish fries, Jumbo prawn fries, Chicken Kafreal, Shark Ambol Tik, Pork Vindaloo and lot many. We also bought some home made Goan sousages which was very unique.

T-Form entries looks funny...

Last edited by jacs : 20th October 2010 at 10:42.
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Old 20th October 2010, 11:02   #22
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Hey Deepak, Sernabatim Beach looks attractive. Is it shallow? Though I had been to Goa, my focus was more into north and the only beach I visited in south was Paloem but the most beautiful beach I ever saw.

And food, yes its a feast for Non veggies. We enjoyed King fish fries, Jumbo prawn fries, Chicken Kafreal, Shark Ambol Tik, Pork Vindaloo and lot many. We also bought some home made Goan sousages which was very unique.

T-Form entries looks funny...
The main beauty about Sernabatim beach is its seclusion. Though it is only 10 minutes walk from benaulim and maybe 15 minutes walk from Colva, there are not too many people. Some people who stay in the two shacks come there. The access is not well known and you need a car to reach there. I have not seen too much difference between the beaches from Colva upto Majorda though I feel that the waves in North Goa are more. This depends a lot on the tide. I have not visited palolem as yet but it is on my "To Do List"

Yes, I find that vegetarians might have a difficult time in Goa. Some of the restaurants have started offering vegetarian versions of popular Goa dishes but I dont if it is the same. The pity as i remarked earlier is that all the touristy places dont seem to serve very authentic goanese dishes but then this is just my opinion and I hardly qualify as an expert. it is also a sea food lovers delight but I have been seeing that the prices have gone up quite a lot since my last visit.


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Old 20th October 2010, 20:18   #23
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Default Day 3: 12th October – Tuesday

It is not yet 8:30 AM and I am typing the back log of the travelogue. Wife has gone and bought the fresh Goa Pav and I munch one along with the tea. This pav needs to be had fresh with large blobs of butter. It does melt in the mouth and needs to be finished fast since there are no preservatives and it does get stale. If you are a bit early you can get Kadak Pav or Brun Bread as is called in some parts of Bangalore. This is even tastier but can be a threat to your teeth. The best way to have it is again with enough artery clogging butter and dipping in tea.

The newspaper which I am reading after 3 days mentions about some crisis in Karnataka but it does seem to be serious enough an issue to tax my brains on. Something about the government collapsed or on the verge of collapse but I don’t want to tax my brains thinking about such trivial things. The plan is to go to the beach for some serious swimming, catch Bulu for some parasailing continue with swimming and eating.

Children had been told that we would go parasailing. We head towards Benaulim beach and establish contact with Bulu and his brother Manoj. Commercial negotiations over they put on the harness and then the wait begins. It seems the skipper of the speedboat has been summoned. Skipper arrives and swims towards the speed boat. 10 minutes of waiting and it is clear that there is some glitch. Communication is established between Manoj and the skipper first through a series of whistles and after some pestering from me by cell phone and we are told that there is a loose wire on the boat and it should be fixed in 15 minutes. 15 minutes of further waiting convinces us that it is a lost cause and we head towards Sernbatim with a promise to Manoj that we would return. However I miss the turn for Sernabatim beach and find myself in Colva. Too lazy to reverse we head onwards to Betalbatim and find the beach. The beach is completely deserted and though I can see the hordes in Colva towards the south and what I presume is Majorda to the north, the hordes seem to have given this little stretch a miss. I cant understand why the crowds have given this section a miss but then don’t complain too much. One of my favourite pastimes in the water is to "surf the waves". I had learnt this a long time back and I dont remember who has taught me. The trick is to dive along with the wave when it is just forming. If the timing is right and the wave is of the correct size, then you get propelled along with the wave like a torpedo. This requires a lot of practice and with due humility and modesty I can state that I have perfected this now.I unfortunately dont have any photos of this. Only a video can do justice.

Love Story - Sun Surf Sand and Sorpotel-betalbatim.jpg

Betalbatim Beach

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I could be mistaken for David Hasselhof??

This exclusive beach is exquisite and I start another session of pondering on life’s mysteries.

One of the mysteries is the 3 cows which walk slowly towards the sea and have a few sips of sea water. I have never seen or imagined anything like this and cant figure out why they lapped the salty water. They move past us slowly staring at us once in a while and I wonder if they will charge at us. However they move on and I start pondering on the dog who has got a vantage point for a siesta and is undisturbed with all the activity.

Love Story - Sun Surf Sand and Sorpotel-cowsonbeach.jpg

Puzzled Cows- Have they never seen humans before ?

See photo at end of this post for more about the dog


Having pondered sufficiently we head back towards Bennaulim to try our luck with Bulu. The stars are favouring us and Manoj informs us that the boat was repaired “just after we left”. Children go on a parasailing and come back thrilled. If any of the readers of this travelogue do go to Benaulim and want to do parasailing please patronize Bulu or Manoj and tell them your connection with the Oriya family who come there every October. It will not benefit you or me and might marginally benefit Bulu, but it will make me happy for sure and there is a good chance that Bulu would be happy.

Love Story - Sun Surf Sand and Sorpotel-buluandmanoj.jpg

Bulu and Manoj. It is bad form to post someones photo online without their knowledge but I have a strong feeling that neither of them would object

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My Children Para Sailing

It is only 12:30 And it seems a shame to come back home so early so we set camp again and I do a bit of swimming in Benaulim before heading back. The internal system has been taxed to the extreme with all the dining and we decide to give some rest to the system and have good old Maggi. This was a wise decision though fasting might have been a better decision. The bloating feeling gradually disappears and I skip my original plan of heading back to the beach. My nose is now looking as it has come out of the tandoor. Receding hairline no longer protects the scalp and the scalp is peeling. A short siesta helps further rest the system and by 6:00 PM we are back at the beach which seems to have become a happening place. We walk towards Varca seeing stretches of sand with Jelly fish followed by a section of crabs and the last section of star fish. The place looks like a graveyard of these and the tide is receding further.

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Graveyard

In the distance we hear some blaring music of unknown origin and see that we have reached the Taj Exotica. There are lights of different colours and the music hurts our sensitive disposition. Thank god we are not staying in the place. Common wealth games seems to have driven everyone out of Delhi and many of them have landed up in Goa. Non veg specifically chicken sales have jumped up reports the morning paper but they don’t mention my small though significant contribution to the pork and sea food economy. We stare at the sun setting and head back towards the twinkling lights of Benaulim. The beach is still crowded and Johncys seem to be crowded at this early hour. The debate rages as to where we should eat. We want to be in “a happening place” but it is very difficult to predict which place is going to be happening. Car is almost on reserve and there are no petrol pumps nearby. People sell petrol in mineral water bottles but Lucia is quite delicate and her linings may not be able to stomach the local stuff. This means we should go somewhere nearby – Fiplees which has live music or Jonhncys on the beach which seems to have quite a crowd. Though I don’t believe in Vastu or Feng Shui, when I see two restaurants next to each other, one full and the other empty it is clear that there are some hidden aspects which science cannot explain. After all the location is the same, food is by and large then same. Why then is one always full and the other always empty? We finally settle on Fiplees where we have gone twice before on previous trips. The added advantage is that it is a 50 meter walk from home.

Love Story - Sun Surf Sand and Sorpotel-fiplees.jpg

Fiplees - one of the most happening places in Benaulim

It is 09:00 as we reach Fiplees and there is hardly any crowd. Music is playing from the system and some other sound system is being setup. There is the promise of live music. A young woman comes and starts singing. She has one of the most beautiful voices we have heard in a long long time and she is playing music “from my times”. It does trigger some couple to start dancing which in turn triggers some others to follow suit. There is some debate within us as to whether the dancing is in time to the music or even appropriate to the music. I hear Don Mclean, Janis Joplin coming from the young lady in one of the most melodious voices I have heard. We keep listening to the music and ordering starters which are decent. . Things get a bit disconcerting when a group of four young guys start staring at the stage. The body language is clear – they are actually going to the stage to dance. My prediction comes through and they land up on the stage stand in a chorus line and start something that looks like a dance cigarettes dangling from the mouth to complete the effect. Families (majority of the customer) hastily avert their eyes and my children stare in amazement. DJ suddenly gets up from some conversation he was having and comes and literally throws them out of the stage. No pretense at politeness, simply an order to get out. They meekly go back to their table, have a brain storming session and attempt to go back to the DJ. This time the waiter screams at them and asks them to sit quietly at their table. They are gracious enough to clap after the song. Things quieten down and the music goes on. The singer is just too amazing and keeps singing to the small number of customers. We suddenly realize it is 12:30. No one coming and mentioning “last order”. No one is giving us subtle hints to leave. Some one is actually entering the restaurant as we leave.

End of Day 3

Love Story - Sun Surf Sand and Sorpotel-thisisgoa.jpg


This ladies and gentlemen is what Goa is all about
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Old 22nd October 2010, 21:01   #24
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I didnt really want to break the flow, but its been 2 days
Wonderfully written Deepak.
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Old 22nd October 2010, 21:49   #25
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I didnt really want to break the flow, but its been 2 days
Wonderfully written Deepak.
Thanks. I have been a bit busy and did not get around to writing day 4. It will be out shortly Deepak
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Old 22nd October 2010, 21:55   #26
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5 star from me and wifey. I was reading it aloud for both of us to listen and enjoy. Never read anything like this in the forum since we joined (a year)! Great sense of humor. We did not have to order for a showcase movie this Friday night! Thanks, Deepak. Anxiously awaiting more.
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Old 22nd October 2010, 22:17   #27
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Thanks for sharing your experience and info on the beaches with less crowd.Nice pictures.Bring on more.
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Old 22nd October 2010, 22:26   #28
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Default Day 4 Wednesday 13th October:

Every Day seems to have been the same – a cycle of

1)Wake up
2)Eat
3)Swim
4)Eat
5)Rest
6)Eat
7)Sleep

One would assume that things would get boring with such a monotonous routine but it is not so and every day has been like day 1. Today has been different.

It is now 11:00. We have been up since 8:00 , walked to the market to buy some bread and sausages and polished them off. The debate is on whether to go to Chapora fort or Anjuna flea market. We don’t know North Goa too well and are wondering if to go there or continue to laze. It is too late for the beach with the sun up in full power. After a lot of brainstorming we decide to head out first northwards and then decide where exactly. After all as the old sages told us, the journey is as important as the destination. If the destination is not known it is just the journey that remains. For some strange reason our apartment has no cell coverage save for a 1 x1 foot square in the balcony. It is bit tedious holding the cell phone out of the balcony but I try to reach one of my friends who is is also on vacation in Calangute but don’t succeed. Mission failing we leave for North Goa with a small detour to Margao to fill up Lucia who is now almost on empty tank.


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Lucia Contended

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Highway Hoardings



Satiated Lucia purrs and I phone the only Goa authority I know and ask her if it would be better to visit Chapora fort where we can indulge in some Dil Chahta Hai antics or head for Anjuna flea market. After some hemming and hawing she confesses that she has not visited either of these places though she has been born and brought up in Goa. There is a suspicion that Anjuna Flea market might have not started in full swing on account of the unseasonal rains. We decide to head for Baga beach and sit at Brittos one of the happening places and decide what to do thereafter.



Attachment 442360


Baga Beach. Villagers like me from South Goa get overwhelmed


We sit in Brittos and I manage to establish contact withy my friend who tells me that he is headed for a famous eating place called Brittos and asks me if I know the place. He does land up in 5 minutes with family and we have a short discussion on the power of coincidences and start lunch. Brittos is a very popular place and service is not too great. Much has been written in some excellent travelogues that are running concurrently to mine and there is no need for me to get into too much details. The food by now tastes all the same and it is getting difficult to distinguish between good and bad. That might be on account of ordering the same type of food. However we have a nice time and head for the Anjuna flea market. We find it by asking people and have an adventure in parking the car on the narrow road. I hate these market concepts but wife and children enjoy it. All stalls seem horribly over priced and I don’t understand the concept of buying t-shirts with Goa written on them. There are a couple of small dirty cafes with one bearded guy doing some serious guitaring in one of them. If I was not so nervous I might have actually sat and enjoyed the music. However I feel claustrophobic and after a couple of customary photographs manage to persuade everyone to head back.



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Photos of Anjuna Beach near the flea market.




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Clicking photo of Anjuna



If we had come a bit earlier maybe I would have enjoyed Anjuna. We skip Calingute and I don’t feel I am missing much. On the last trip I had visited once and did not like it too much. It was more on account on the number of people rather than the place and hope that I would spend some more time in North Goa on the next pilgrimage
It is a long and tiring journey back and I don’t understand why it takes so long. Anyway we are back home by 6:30 and start the ritual of planning our next meal. After a lot of dithering we decide on Martins Corner. Martins Corner is one of the well known restaurants in South Goa and is supposed to be a favourite of Sachin Tendulkar and the inspiration behind his restaurant in Mumnbai. My personal opinion is So-so. I find it very elegant and the food is decent. It looks like it has some history but I do find the staff a bit snooty. Paintings on the wall seem to have been done by Mario Miranda.


Attachment 442371


Paintings on Martin's Corner


The place is very popular and if you don’t have a reservation you get one of the lousier tables. We did not have a reservation and got pushed to the lousy section. It is open karaoke night and the karaoke section is not in line of sight which is actually a good thing as the mike gets hijacked by the customers one by one. It slowly becomes a weapon of mass destruction and we are glad to make an exit. We had mistakenly picked a table not under a fan and I am sweating profusely from a combination of the heat and spices.


This has been a short entry and I will end with some information on houses in Goa. If you are fond of architecture it is a pleasure to just walk on some roads and enjoy the old houses. My copy of Outlook Guide to Goa has some heritage walks and it is very interesting to actually go on them. You get to know the history of some of the houses you walk by and see some peculiarities. I would highly recommend making one of these walks and admire the houses. I don’t know how long it will be before they disappear and malls and apartment complexes start sprouting in their places. I pray that it will take a long time. It was interesting to note for example that the fishermen had their shacks on the beach as a result of which the gentry had their houses away from the beach. You rarely find stately houses on the beach or near the sea. Houses are also built slightly elevated so as to give a feeling of largeness. I had seen a large house just next to my apartment and wanted to chat with the inhabitants to find out the history but was deterred by an aggressive dog which had a very proprietorial view of the house


Attachment 442372

Old House

Love Story - Sun Surf Sand and Sorpotel-statelyhouse.jpg

View on bridge towards North Goa
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Old 22nd October 2010, 22:39   #29
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Deepak you have some very dry humour that is unusually well written. Extremely enjoyable. Thank you for this and please do continue.
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Old 22nd October 2010, 23:24   #30
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Re-read this and my highlights thus far:

- prolonging the decision of lucia or steffi by getting both checked
- story of the wire hanging within the car (when will we know about this?)
- in-flight dining but still eat idlies at Kamats
- about alcohol-smuggling into Goa
- form filling at the border
- panchayat at Maria Hall
- "I assume that the smaller non touristy places away from the hubs might be the better places though as tourists I have never tried such places"
- T-Form filling (brilliant)
- "I can feel the cholesterol solidifying on my arteries and have started marking my blood group as UB+ wherever required to be stated"
- "my native"
- eating maggi
- "Do children really go to school in Goa? Isnt is cruel ? Do people really go to office here ? Do people have regular 9-5 jobs ? It seems so strange and we feel bad for the poor kids."
- Day 4 - opening para
- "has no cell coverage save for a 1 x1 foot square in the balcony"
- "WMD" at Martin's Corner
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